When you live in times which are described with unfamiliar words, you learn about unfamiliar things:
That’s the Plague Column in Vienna, built with great and greatly prolonged effort to commemorate a plague that struck in 1679. It was finally inaugurated in 1694.
Those of us who are using the word “plague” to describe what’s happening now are being blackly humorous. There’s the definite suggestion of irony quotes. What sort of plague is it that seems to kill less than one percent of those who get it? They weren’t being ironic about plague back then.